1887
Volume 2017, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0253-8253
  • E-ISSN: 2227-0426

Abstract

Nutritional disorders still represent a major problem faced by developing countries. Surveying such problems is a step towards planning proper interventions, which contributes significantly to declines in under-five mortality rates. To study the state of nutritional trends in children under five years of age, attending a primary healthcare center in Al Shoula district, Iraq, in 2006 and 2012. Demographic features and feeding practices that may have had an effect on the nutritional status of children were also studied. Two cross-sectional surveys were conducted on children aged two to five years, in a primary healthcare center in Baghdad. Children attending for immunization were included (500 in 2006 and 570 in 2012), their mothers were interviewed, and the body mass index of the child was calculated. Children who were overweight and obese were identified, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention charts, as those suffering from stunting. Nutritional parameters were compared between the two study groups, using the chi-square test, as well as various epidemiological factors that may have affected the outcomes. The prevalence of both types of nutritional disorders (stunting and overweight and obesity) declined remarkably according to the 2012 survey; overweight and obesity declined from 20% to 7.2%, while stunting decreased from 51.2% to 30.9%. The age group showing the highest rate of improvement were the four to five year olds, as well as children from lower-income families. A higher rate of breastfeeding was reported in 2012, and breastfed babies suffered the least from both types of nutritional disorders, in both study groups. Overall, the study findings showed a high prevalence of stunting (30.9%), together with a significant level of overweight and obesity (7.2%). Children in Iraq suffer from high rates of stunting. With a moderately high rate of obesity, there is an urgent need to evaluate local data available and plan for an active intervention to combat these nutritional problems.

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/content/journals/10.5339/qmj.2017.5
2017-08-16
2019-09-20
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): obesity , overweight , Preschool children and stunting trends
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